Aug 072014
 

Phoenix In His Jeep Header

11 years ago this week I brought Phoenix home with me as a puppy. A month later I purchased my dream vehicle, a Jeep Grand Cherokee, which I had saved up for all of my life. It quickly became Phoenix’s Jeep and it was extremely disconcerting to him two months ago when I didn’t show up in it.

He absolutely loves riding shotgun next to me and has become a conversation piece all over Reno. At stop lights, the gas station, any drive thru window, stores. You name it. He is always sooooo happy to see and interact with anyone. We go everywhere together.

For the photo police I always have my eyes on the road. I do drive with my left hand because I always have my right hand resting on the gear shift in the Jeep as he wants to always be touching me. That is, when he’s not goofing off. I just hold the iPhone and snap literally hundreds of photos blindly. I’m glad we got that straight πŸ™‚

I had to take his Jeep into the shop for a 24 hour stay when I pulled up to the doggie daycare facility to pick him up in this. Well, things got interesting…
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By the way, I had not had a rental vehicle in some 20 years and I had a few things to get used to. Like the fact that I jabbed the key into the side of the steering column out of habit until I found where the ignition hole was located…
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There was no gear shift anywhere to be found! Oh there…turn the knob…how quaint…
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What I loved was having satellite radio for 24 hours! Woo hoo!
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So, I brought Phoenix out to head home…
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He looked one way…
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Then the other…
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Then the questioning…
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I showed him the big red truck and said his Jeep would be back tomorrow. But, for now we had to get into the big red truck. He refused and had drawn his own conclusions…
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I told him that it was NOT stolen and it was only a truck that I borrowed for a day!
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He peered over my right shoulder here and pondered the licence plate right behind me knowing that we live in Nevada…
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With his presumption of my guilt and breaking the law he was ever so supportive…
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The truck was much higher than his Jeep so I helped him in…
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Then the antics started and he was letting everyone know…
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*eyeroll*

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Doh! So embarrassing…
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Oh hey, like the new prescription sun glasses?
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And my new regular glasses…
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Always with the snide remarks…
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We headed towards home and stopped at a light and he went at it again. Phoenix will stare at you if you pull alongside side us until you acknowledge him. Yep!
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We were listening to tunes as we headed home then Baha Men came on…
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So, he had ONE nice thing to say!
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My wing man being ever concerned for my welfare…
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Seriously, Phoenix? *me shaking my head and eyerolling again*
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Just perfect…
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Alas, the next day things were back to a bit of normalcy. Β Still being cranky but at least in his own ride. Thank gawd…
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This time we are giving a shout out to our friend, Suzanne at Boomeresque, of which I waited for a Phoenix post to share. A long time ago she was my very first blogger connection and an amazing friendship was built. When he got sick, he and I received literally hundreds of emails, Twitter messages and Facebook inquiries as to “Where are you?? Is Phoenix ok??” We remember them all and responded back and to this day are deeply grateful to ALL of you! I kept what was going on very private because the outlook was not favorable. Suzanne literally emailed me daily to check up on us while she was vacationing in Hawaii. She and her husband travel and enjoy a semi-retired life along with their adorably cute dog, Dino! They also have two awesome sons. Thank you again always for everything, Suzanne! Please check out her awesome boomer baby posts here at Boomeresque!

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Mike Vogler

I have been told (many times) that I really need to write a book about my life. The past 40+ years have been an exciting ride, and these days I find myself with a great many passions. However, I feel that this website is a much more personal way with which to share my musings, stories, commentary, and (of course) my greatest love... my Golden Retriever, Phoenix.

  92 Responses to “Phoenix, My Golden Retriever, And Our Stolen Truck Caper”

  1. Hi Mike,

    That is SO hilarious!! very well articulated! Now that is what I call a soulmate! Phoenix knows you so well!! Lovely pics, as usual and the poses given by Phoenix convey more than what your words say! Thanks for sharing a wonderful post, a real treat!

    • Thank you Balroop and oh most definitely on my soul mate! He is a very communicative kid πŸ™‚

  2. The thing is, I think those bubble thoughts were probably correct as to what was going on in Phoenix’s mind. Hilarious! I’m still grinning.

    Mike, thanks so much for the shout out for Boomeresque. I think you’ve figured out that you and Phoenix have a whole lot of folks all over the world who vicariously love and enjoy your relationship with Phoenix (and vice versa). πŸ™‚

    (P.S.: Only one of us is semi-retired. Mr. Excitement has more than a full time job and was actually working in Hawaii — albeit on sabbatical from his home institution. Speaking of Hawaii—let’s all send those on the Hawaiian islands positive thoughts—-two hurricanes in a row–really? Is this necessary?)

    • Your kind words are always greatly appreciated by us, Suzanne πŸ™‚ Looks like the Big Island got a bit of reprieve as I’ve watched The Weather Channel. Now, will hope the same for this next one. We were in Kauai right after their hurricane. That was a bad deal.

  3. Nice doggy dialogue Phoenix. And two new pairs of glasses for the man – a two for one deal? Lookin smooth. Phoenix looks very fluffy. He is right on to you and your thieving ways. πŸ™‚

    • Ha, no 2 for 1 deal as they are prescription glasses, Jan πŸ™‚ Yes, Phoenix keeps me on my toes.

  4. Funny! Love the look and the… You stole a truck…I’m not going! Funny guy that Phoenix is!

  5. Ooh, I love that red truck, though your Jeep is awesome too! This was hilarious to read, as always. Reminds me of my son who only loves sitting in his Dad’s car, and doesn’t think highly of cabs.

    • It was a nice truck but not my kind of ride. That is so cute with your son, Tarana! Probably doesn’t like overcharged fares πŸ™‚

  6. Love the pics and the captions! Phoenix has a wonderfully expressive face, doesn’t he? Nice glasses, Mike. πŸ™‚ BTW, I’m looking after a Golden named Taylor, who looks very much like Phoenix, right down to the summer haircut. Have a great weekend you two!

    • Thank you on the compliments and yes he’s very expressive, Debbie. How fun on looking after Taylor! You guys have a great weekend also πŸ™‚

  7. Hahaha this is PERFECT, I can totally imagine this happening! Like Phoenix, Gillman is completely routine orientated and lays personal claim to “his” items. When his old bag got to shabby to use anymore and I surprised him with a new one, he was seriously like “mommy, what is that thing and where is MY bag?!” It took him a while to get used to;-)

    And love the new glasses!!!

    • Oh how spot on true about routines, Jess. That is sooooo funny about the transition from the old bag to his new one! πŸ™‚

  8. Oh Phoenix, you very much crack me up!! But you know, if your dad went to jail (had he sped up and gotten caught), who would remember to feed you? Also, I love the song you were listening to on satellite radio by Maroon Five! I wish I could pull up next to you guys at a light and your new glasses and sunglasses look awesome, Mike!!

    • Thank you for compliments very much, Kristi, and I found SO much new music just over that 24 hour period because of having that station. I would listen to it all of the time if I had it on a daily basis! I liked the Maroon Five as well πŸ™‚

  9. PS I “stumbled” this – let me know if you get any traffic from that!!!

  10. Our dog’s ears come to immediate attention whenever I say the word “car” but she’s not nearly as picky as Phoenix about the type of vehicle or who she’ll get in with. Finally this summer (this afternoon) we are able to take her on one of my 100 adventures for the book so in a few hours she will be wondering just why we’re in the car for so long. Then tomorrow as we hike (please no more hills she’ll be thinking), I know she’ll be secretly counting the hours until she can spread out and sleep in the backseat for the return. Hiking is overrated in her mind though a swim in a mountain lake is ok.
    It’s such a pleasure to have her along and see the hike through a dog’s eyes. She’s also good for bear alert duty.

    • Phoenix isn’t picky about going with OTHERS in their vehicles (i.e. dog sitters, etc)…but that was fascinating not wanting anything to do with ME in a different vehicle, Leigh. I hope your pup loves the hike and Phoenix would agree with her on swimming instead of hiking. Very nice on the bear alerts! Good pup πŸ™‚

  11. LOL! That Phoenix is one hilarious pup. Not very nice of him to try to rat out his master like that considering you didn’t actually steal the truck but what are you gonna do?

    Love the new shades!

    • I know, right Kim?? πŸ™‚ I’m so glad you stopped by…thank you. And I appreciate the compliment on the glasses too! πŸ™‚

  12. Love your story, Phoenix! Quite an adventure!? “California Stolen” is my favorite part πŸ™‚ Also, I can picture you listening to “Who Let The Dogs Out!” tune LOL
    I look forward to your new stories. Please say Hi to Mike and tell him that the idea of putting blurbs on your pics is excellent!

    • Thank you, Mr Memographer! It was a very puzzling day and something just had to be up! Regardless I had to give my Daddy a super bad time about it. I will tell him what you said and we both say hi to you, our friend πŸ™‚

  13. You scared me with the word “stolen” in your title. For the first time in my ancient life, I had my wallet stolen today – not thousands of miles away, but at a Curves fitness center only a few blocks away where I know all the women. Now I’m not saying I think only men steal things, like Phoenix was alluding too.
    Thanks for making my day brighter with this great story and photogenic Phoenix. I’m still chuckling about the tune and captions.

    • I’m glad it brighten your day, Neva! But, oh my gosh I’m SO SORRY to hear about your wallet! That’s just horrible. People who have to go down that path….grrrrr. We hope you are able to resolve all of that w/o too much of a headache! I know it can be frustrating but we are sending you good thoughts! πŸ™‚

  14. Does Phoenix wear a doggy seat belt of some sort?! The speech bubbles are so much fun – Phoenix has a lot to say. πŸ˜‰

    • He’s the talkative one isn’t it, Patti? No, he doesn’t have a harness in his Jeep and that was something I debated long and hard about. Ironically, I totally advocate them for dogs! πŸ™‚

  15. So cute. I just want to give your dog a hug!

    • Oh gosh, Phoenix would most definitely like that, Susan! And he hugs back too πŸ™‚

  16. My son’s dog doesn’t care what her humans drive as long as they understand she is a part of the deal and there is no going anywhere without her. They are all her vehicles. They just got a small boat and she loves it more than they do, if possible. I love dogs with personality! And yeah, your new glasses are good – modern and fresh! Lookin’ good there – oh yeah, and you, too, Mike! Bwahahahaha.

    • Thank you for the compliment on the glasses, Nan! Ya, Phoenix has no problem going in vehicles with other people. But, that day sure had him baffled and then…well, you can see what ensued. A boat would be a blast! I’m trying to get him on a jet ski with a Go Pro camera if we can work it out πŸ™‚

  17. Aw, too funny! That Phoenix sure knows when Daddy’s been bad (or so he thinks). You can’t get away with anything,Mike πŸ™‚ The pictures are awesome!! Love the talking bubbles for Phoenix, too. This post made me smile and feel happy. Thanks, Mike!

    • You are absolutely right on that wary eye of my kid on me, Lisa! We are SO happy that this made you smile, our friend! That makes blogging and writing a post worth every minute of it to hear from a reader πŸ™‚

  18. You are wonderfully good at these photo stories, Mike! This was the perfect lift after a long, exhausting week at work. I’m sitting here smiling, totally in love with that smiley-faced Phoenix and the clever dialog that goes on between you! πŸ™‚

    • Awesome, and we are so glad it gave you a little pick-me-up, Josie! Hopefully you are recharging your batteries this weekend πŸ™‚

  19. First time visit you your blog. I came via Debbie’s DogLady’s Den. I have to say I loved all the photos and Phoenix’s thought bubbles. A great way to tell the story.

    Being an Aussie though I can’t get my head around the way you Yanks call utes trucks. To an Aussie a truck is a whole lot bigger.

    I enjoyed this post so much I just have to give it a Stumble. I hope it generates the traffic it deserves.

    • Hi Peter, and so awesome that you stopped by for a visit! We are glad you enjoyed our little caper. LOL…to us Yanks and our “trucks”! When I read that it made me think of the movie Road Warrior filmed down there and the big “real” trucks they had in the film! πŸ™‚ Thank you for the Stumble as well…yes, I did get some extra traffic, sir! Very kind of you! Have a great weekend πŸ™‚

    • Ah, Mel Gibson’s Mad Max 2. Both were great movies and yes that’s what I call a truck.

      I promise to come back to see some of your other posts too. I found your blog to be unique which is pretty rare.

    • That would be great Peter and thank you! Phoenix and I have fun in life and we try to post about that. Whether it’s dining out, cooking at home, about him, some Top 10 movie lists or some of my true life stories sprinkled in here and there! Eventually I will begin traveling overseas and that will be another addition πŸ™‚

  20. Whenever I see photos of Phoenix, I just see zest for life. That boy, is Yoda. Or is it, Yoda, that boy is!?
    No photo police here… I have stories.. people wouldn’t like them.

    • You are right on both counts, Tamara! He does have an incredible zest for life and there truly is a lot of Yoda in his spirituality πŸ™‚ I would like to hear your stories!!

  21. Hilarious story and your new glasses are great!

  22. lol!! such a cute post πŸ™‚ hugs to him

  23. hahhahaha! mike you craked me up! if phoenix would really start speaking up m sure he wud hv the exact same comments to pass on u ;);) the truck is stolen heheheh! :p

  24. Phoenix is a very clever dog. And his father must be too, in order to make his thoughts bubble:)

  25. I love these dialogues between the two of you πŸ™‚ I’m happy to see another Phoenix post, he looks great. Have great weekend my friend

    • Thank you so very much, Freya! πŸ™‚ We have always been happy that you get it between him and I πŸ™‚ You guys have a great weekend too! πŸ™‚

  26. Oh Mike, your “tales and tails” crack me up. Loved this story and like Suzanne suspect that you really did capture Phoenix’s thoughts. I have to admit we’ve been reluctantly talking about the need for a new car and I suspect they are all so new fangled these days, I won’t know how to start it, let alone put it in gear! Have a great weekend.

    • How ironic as I was JUST having a discussion about new vehicles with my buddy and his wife at lunch today. There are some of these new vehicles that have TOO many gadgets and how to operate them. That Grand Cherokee of Phoenix’s is 10 years old…fully loaded…and has everything I could ever want for. GPS, moon roof that opens, seat warmers, auto lights, auto wipers, full air bags to all passengers, etc. You get what I mean I hope. But, good luck in your shopping and we hope you find something you like! πŸ™‚

  27. Great post as always, the pictures tell the story! Keep on sharing and we’ll keep on enjoying…

    • Thank you so much, Mike! We always appreciate you stopping by and keeping the encouragement going, our friend πŸ™‚

  28. This post is amazing! I laughed so hard when I read Phoenix’s thought bubbles. πŸ™‚

    • Oh that is awesome that you liked it, Lady in London! My kid is a very funny boy…even without thought bubbles ha, ha πŸ™‚ Great to hear from you πŸ™‚

  29. Oh Mike you sure do have a super smart dog there! Gee Phoenix you sure were brave to get into the red truck!
    Gee I have never ever seen a car/ute with the gear stick like that, and no key spot on the steering wheel…weird!
    Love the red colour – does that mean it goes faster? Bummer you had to hand it back in! Still I really love your car!
    Phoenix – you are looking so GOOD – love to see your cheeky personality, and your sense of humour – love you xxx

    • It did go fast but that didn’t have anything to do with the red color, Lisa πŸ™‚ I was GLAD to hand it back in as we LOVE our Jeep as you can tell in the post πŸ™‚ Phoenix says we love ya back πŸ™‚

  30. The speech bubbles coming out of Phoenix are soo cute!

  31. Hahaha, Pheonix is so cute! Love how his face matches each thought so perfectly!

    • Catherine, I never could have imagined having a kid for me that is just THAT….so full of expression in his face and his eyes! πŸ™‚

  32. Hah hah! I love this post!!! I always wonder what my dogs are thinking and we spend insane amounts of time pondering it. I love the good news one..bet that us exactly what he was thinking! πŸ™‚

    • LOL thank you Kemkem and yes Phoenix has a bit of a smart aleck streak and isn’t shy about letting ME know! πŸ™‚

  33. Oh Mike! You just made my day! I really needed a good laugh and that was it! “You stole a truck? I’m not going.” with the perfect face to go with! So funny! Big kisses to Phoenix!

    • He will love the kisses for sure, Rita! Of course that made US smile so very much that we brought one to your face today! πŸ™‚

  34. You and Phoenix on the lam – love it! I know that Phoenix naturally gets lots of attention, but I’m sure he got even more attention in that bright red truck! πŸ˜‰

    • Ha, ha…I like that “on the lam…”! The thing that always cracks me up is that he will for real stare at “you” until he is acknowledged. Even on the freeway. Funniest thing ever, Dana! πŸ™‚

  35. Hahaha… cute post πŸ™‚ Pets definitely get acquainted with their human’s vehicles. Our next car will most likely be a Jeep Grand Cherokee. We test drove one this winter, but aren’t ready to trade the current SUV in yet.

    • How ironic you mention that because I want one of those new Grand Cherokee SRT’s soooo bad, Jeri! But, mucho expensive and I honestly just love my 2004 that we have now πŸ™‚ You are right on them getting acquainted to “their” vehicles πŸ™‚

  36. Very funny! πŸ™‚

  37. Mike, lovely and hilarious read, love the captions, the red truck, you in sun glasses (btw are those selfies?) and Phoenix … cute as always πŸ™‚

    • I took the photos of Phoenix and he took the ones of me…so no they are not selfies, Rachel πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Thank you for the compliments! πŸ™‚

  38. Mike, Love it! Phoenix is looking so cute!

  39. I am seriously rolling on the floor laughing. You two are just so funny – you know that if I lived near you I would just have had to pop in and say hello right?

    • That would be fantastic, Bintu! I would love to have you give me a cooking lesson AND even more so a food photography lesson!! Seriously! Have a great day πŸ™‚

  40. Hahaha such a funny post! I love the addition of speech bubbles πŸ™‚ Perhaps its time Phoenix has his own comic strip? πŸ˜›

    • His head is already big enough with his celebrity “status”, Michelle lol! πŸ™‚ Some sort of book, comic strip, something-something, would be fun though huh? Thank you for the compliments! πŸ™‚

  41. Love this! You do the best captions that fit Phoenix’s expressions. Those are so adorable and my kids had a blast reading them. So glad to see he is looking so well and handsome as ever. πŸ˜‰ Have a wonderful week to the both of you!

    • I’m glad you and especially your awesome kids liked it, Mary! He’s quite the character and talker. Always the smart aleck Golden Retriever. I wouldn’t have it any other way πŸ™‚ He is doing fantastic. You guys have a great week too! πŸ™‚

  42. I’ve only just found this post, and I laughed and laughed out loud sitting here on my own in my office at my computer! Phoenix’s expressions go so well with your captions – it really should be a comic book story. Loved it πŸ™‚ Thanks for making me smile today.

    • Oh awesome on the laughter it brought you, Johanna! That made my day and thank you back. Interesting as a few others have mentioned the comic book story angle. Hmmm… πŸ™‚

  43. Oh my girsh! Phoenix is so stinking adorable, particularly in the first photo of him in the stolen truck. I’m pretty sure he’s thinking; “I’m only here because it’s too far to walk home.” He should be in movies. Those facial expressions…sigh. I just yub him (as my three year old daughter says) who by the way, prefers all of the four legged furry friends to the two legged non furry ones.

    • Your sweet daughter has great taste in my regards, Mandi! πŸ™‚ Thank you for the awesome Phoenix compliments. He is the most outwardly expressive soul I’ve ever met πŸ™‚

  44. Hilarious! Of course it’s hard to go back and read knowing what lies ahead. Our dogs will get into any car…they just want to go wherever it is we are going.

    • I’m glad you liked it, Michelle! Just saw this comment sorry. I had tuned out 2 days prior πŸ™ Thank you! πŸ™‚

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